An IVF baby two days overdue survives a tricky birth to be called the couple’s miracle child.

Our little Miracle – Nathan, was born 28 July 2004. He is an IVF baby, our second child, he has a 12 year old sister.

I was 2 days overdue, and did not really feel that I had any signs of labor beginning. I had more frequent Braxton Hicks and some pelvic pressure for about 3 days beforehand, but I never thought too much of it.

Wednesday morning, the nesting began. I cleaned out the spare room, washing all the sheets and blankets in hot water. I was between washes, sitting and reading a magazine when I had a sudden contraction, much more painful and longer lasting than the Braxton Hicks, so I noted the time: 10.38am. Next one came 7 minutes later, and I had a show. I called the hospital, the midwife seemed to think that I would "go into labor" within 24-48 hours. I knew right there and then that I was already in labor, and I told the midwife that I didn’t think it would take that long. She suggested I take a warm bath and have some morning tea, and take some Panadeine. No hot bath for me – I had used all the hot water in the wash, I had no Panadeine, so I took 2 Panadol instead. (I thought about that later – useless!).

My contractions remained 6-7 minutes apart for about half an hour, and then seemed to come closer and closer together, very quickly. I called my husband home from work at 11am, by the time he got home 20 minutes later the contractions were 4-5 minutes apart, and lasting about 40 seconds. And getting more and more painful. I paced the house, walking with each contraction. It seemed to help a little, and I was too uncomfortable to sit. By 12.30 I was in too much pain to remain at home. I had a quick shower, hubby did the same. We picked up our daughter from school and headed to the hospital.

At 1.00pm the midwife examined me, I was 4 cm’s dilated. I requested the gas. It helped me breath through each contraction properly but did not help the pain. I could not believe how painful this was, much more painful than my first baby. I asked for pethidene at 2.00pm. I had a large dose, 150 mg. It did nothing for the pain, so I asked for an epidural. "Too late" the midwife said. I was devasted and kept begging for it. They insisted that my labor was progressing too fast and that there would not be any time. The were right. By 3.30pm, I was in agony, and I was taking in the maximum amount of gas possible. Suddenly my contractions started to "roll", 1 after the other, no break in between, and incredibly intense. I didn’t realise it, but I was in transition. The midwife examined me again, 9 cm’s dilated. I screamed and moaned with the pain. My water broke at 3.38pm spontaneously, and I began pushing a minute later.

I don’t recall much of the second stage, the pethidine and gas made me feel "whacked out". I do remember the awful stinging sensation as my baby’s head crowned, and then the sheer relief as he slipped out at 4.04pm. Wednesday 28 July 2004. A beautiful baby boy. He had some trouble, he was not breathing – a result of 3 things: the pethidine suppressed his respiratory system as it was given too late, his cord was wrapped around his neck and legs, and the second stage was 24 minutes – a little too quick. A paediatrician was called in to resuscitate him. He was given an oxygen mask, 2 injections of Narcan (to reverse the effects of the pethidine), and tactile stimulation. It took 5 minutes to get him breathing. All I could manage was to occasionally ask if he was ok. No one said a word, they were too busy working on my baby, to keep him alive. He was completely white, no color in him at all until he started breathing. Finally, he pinked up and started breathing, and he was given to his dad while the doctor stitched me up.

I held my miracle baby for the first time about half an hour after his birth. It was the most precious moment of my life.

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